Henry IV

  • Katharine Goodland
  • John O’Connor
Part of the A Directory of Shakespeare in Performance Series book series (DSP)


The first part of… This Star of England consisted of 1 Henry IV, trimmed, augmented by pieces of 2 Henry TV, and with the last scenes of that play tacked on to it as a kind of Act VI… Hotspur… stuttered—particularly on words beginning with w. As this Hotspur died, he… struggled not only for life but to get out his last word: worms, the word Hal has to furnish for him. The effect may be based in wrongheadedness, but it is touching and altogether appropriate to the moment. The sword fight in which Hotspur perished was stretched out to last as long as possible…The sword fights are good sword fights…but they can and do deaden the scenes they bloat… Tom Ramirez was a subdued Pistol and more than usually comic for being less a noisy clown than usual and a more efficient and threatening fraud… Kurtwood Smith necessarily started out loud, passionate, and as hot as Hotspur; he maintained that norm throughout and effectively developed sympathy and understanding by periodically softening into a human being… [Dakin Matthews’] performance…was so generally expert that even before intermission the… audience suspected that Falstaff was funny; (Stephen Booth, Shakespeare Quarterly 29 [1978]: 269–71)


Rear Wall Copper Sheet Twin City Singular Event Dark Tone 
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Copyright information

© Katharine Goodland and John O’Connor 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katharine Goodland
  • John O’Connor

There are no affiliations available

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